Mangalchand Meghwal, a small farmer from the Charanwas village of Nagaur district, committed suicide on August 4. It has been reported that his family took a loan of ₹2.98 lakh from Punjab National Bank. Despite having returned around ₹1.75 lakh, the bank and police were demanding that Mangalchand pay ₹4.59 lakh (including interest). The farmer came under stress due to an order to auction his land and hanged himself.
On August 8, the President of the Rajasthan Pradesh Congress Committee, Sachin Pilot visited Charanwas, where he met the victim’s family to console them. After paying homage to Mangal, he also interacted with local villagers who informed him about the whole incident. He then announced that the Congress Party will pay the loan to the bank on behalf of the Meghwal family. Surprisingly, he fulfilled his promise in just two and a half hours where a Congress delegation went to the bank and settled the debt. This act created a buzz in the state.
It is a very sad incident that on one hand, Chief Minister Vasundhara has embarked on an election campaign rally titled ‘Rajasthan Gaurav Yatra’, whereas, on the other hand, people of Charanwas village witnessed ‘Shav-Yatra’ (funeral) of Mangalchand Meghwal, a Dalit farmer. It is surprising that in a country where the BJP Government has waived the debts of thousand crores of many biggies, farmers are killing themselves under the pressure of the bank loan. People like Nirav Modi have been absconding with a loan of thousands of crores from the same bank, while they have been continuously pressurising small farmers like Mangalchand to repay their loans.
According to Pilot, the way Mangalchand’s family was humiliated, threatened and insulted proved that BJP is not serious about the problems of farmers. BJP government’s claim of being a helping hand to the farmers appears to be hollow.
At present, both BJP and Congress are gearing up for the state assembly elections in Rajasthan at the end of this year. Last week, BJP’s National President Amit Shah flagged off Vasundhara Raje-led BJP’s ‘Rajasthan Gaurav Yatra’, while on August 11, INC’s National President Rahul Gandhi will visit Jaipur to flag off the election campaign in the state. Under the leadership of state President Sachin Pilot, Congress is excited about Rahul Gandhi’s visit and currently preparing for the tour. As per media reports, Gandhi will be visiting two popular temples – Moti Dungri and Govind Devji in Jaipur, followed by a meeting with party workers and leaders in Ramleela Maidan.
Editor’s note: President of the Rajasthan Pradesh Congress Committee, Sachin Pilot will be a part of a political debate at the Youth Ki Awaaz Summit – a two-day event that’ll bring together 20+ changemakers from across themes who define the voice of young India. To attend, click here to apply!